Man what?! After a stressful and hot day and waiting in line around the corner of The Howard Theater, we were able to experience the powerful energy of the artists associated with Wondaland Records. Artists Janelle Monae, Jidenna, St. Beauty, Roman GianArthur, and Deep Cotton. The wait was totally worth it. All of these artists together put on such a versatile show I felt like I paid for it! And the most powerful part of the show was everyone singing Janelle Monae’s song “Hell You Talmbout” which is an ode to the unarmed black victims who have been murdered unjustly at the hands of police brutality. I felt so much energy from this song as I have recently been feeling drained and depressed by so many of these murders happening. I hope you enjoy these photos and please remember Black Lives Matter.
“This song is a vessel. It carries the unbearable anguish of millions. We recorded it to channel the pain, fear, and trauma caused by the ongoing slaughter of our brothers and sisters. We recorded it to challenge the indifference, disregard, and negligence of all who remain quiet about this issue. Silence is our enemy. Sound is our weapon. They say a question lives forever until it gets the answer it deserves… Won’t you say their names?” -Janelle Monae
Can someone explain the reasoning behind these “Holy Trinities” being exclusively praise of light skin and/or biracial looking Black women?
Like I know alot of people like Beyonce, Rihanna, and Nicki Minaj. I like them too. I know alot of people like Willow Smith, Amandla Stenberg, and Zandaya. Again I like them too but why is it that this “holy trinity” title is given to exclusively light skin women, girls, and children? Like I hear people saying that we all should be happy for these females for black excellence but why is it that ya’ll only pick out the light skin celebrities to praise? To call a queen or a goddess? I know the reasoning can’t be because only these people are the ones making things happen. They aint. Dark skin women and girls are doing some awesome stuff too that should also be praised.
Brandy is the reason why there are half of female singers in the game today. Like you ask a female singer who is her inspiration and many would name Brandy. Many would bring up her show, Moesha. Many would bring up her unique vocal talents and the fact that she was their Black Princess growing up when she was casted as Cinderella. But she is also slaying recently too. People are loving her on broadway as Roxie in Chicago. And it’s amazing because ya’ll know White people hate it when a poc gets a typically “White role”.
Janelle Monae made one album that skyrocked and now she has her own record label, Wondaland Records. She. Has. Her. Own. Record. Label. Why can’t she be a “queen”? Why aint yall praising her? But to yall I guest making your own record label doesn’t grant you any acknowledgements. Janelle can dance, sing, write music but somehow no love for her.
Sevyn Streeter is making great music. She has a great singing voice. People say she does the songs she covers justice like Aaliyah’s music and is known for making good eps. She isn’t just a good singer but also a good dancer. She wrote songs for Usher and other artists.
Keke Palmer is the first Black woman to be casted as Cinderella on broadway. People her are loving her on Scream Queens. She is a good young actress. She was Chili in TLC movie. But no love for her either.
Quvenzhane wallis was the youngest person to get nominated for best actress. She was the first Black Annie. But yall just focus on Willow Smith and she really hadn’t done anything yet. She gonna be a model now but it seems like yall praise these girls before they even do anything. Not to say that Willow isn’t gonna do anything super great she is sign as a model now but damn yall praise her as a trinity before that happened when other girls were already being stars in films and getting nominees.
sings about society, speaks out on issues, makes song after song about how she loves who she is and how she's not gonna apologize for being herself
YASS JANELLE YASSSS
sings baby bend over lemme see you do that yoga in one song
wow she's so TRASHY WOW I CAN'T BELIEVE SHE'S A HOE NOW
continually supports women, proclaims herself as a feminist, makes a song blatantly about feminism, makes another about how society cares more about a girl's appearance rather than who she really is
YAS BEYONCE! QUEEN!! QUEEN BEY!
sings about having sex with her husband in the back of a limo
she's so trashy! WHAT HAPPENED TO THE OLD BEYONCE?
went through a relationship that ended in domestic violence, still got back up stronger than ever and didn't let it stop her from being successful, is prospering in the fashion industry, made a song blatantly about how society only sees half of her through the media and they really don't know anything about her
RIH IS KILLIN IT! I LOVER HER!
sings about sex straight out
she's such a whore, she's so trashy! why can't she go back to before? rihanna is NASTY.
went through a hell of time growing up, still prospered, tells ALL her fans to stay in school, has made uplifting songs time and time again, writes her own lyrics and throws subtle shade
TELL EM NICKI! ION GIVE A FUCK SHE'S SO INSPIRATIONAL!
sings about sex and dicks and whatever
nicki is such a whore? i bet her ass isn't even real! TRASH!
the point is:
you guys like to overlook all the good female artists these days do the second they talk about sex, as if feminism and sex can't go hand in hand. you will discredit them EVERYTHING because GOD FORBID WOMEN SING ABOUT BEING STRONG AND STILL LIKE TO HAVE SEX AND TALK ABOUT IT GOD FORBID—honestly. get your shit together.
For those of you who don’t know, Sally Ride was the first American woman to ever go into space. She joined NASA in 1978 and remained until 1987 when she left to go work at Stanford. Later she eventually started Sally Ride Science. Sally was also known as the youngest American astronaut to ever go in space. Also? Sally was an out queer woman who co-authored six children’s books with her partner.
I am convinced when Janelle sings the words “Wake up, Mary. Have you heard the news? You got to wake up Mary. You got the right to choose.” She is eluding to the right to love who you want to. Janelle’s album is full queer innuendo. Janelle is a very conscientious artist, and she chose the title of this song to send a direct message about freedom to love who and how one chooses, in spite of societal pressures to conform to the standard.
So, I stumbled upon your Pre-Serum Steve post on "History Geekery for Steve Rogers" and find that you might be the best person to ask this question that has been bothering me for AGES. A lot of times, people always put Steve in this "Old Fashioned Forties Mentality Box" yet the MCU canon/most of Marvel Comic canon is all "Steve Rogers was ahead of his time and a complete sweetheart, OMG." I've always thought the man was a bit of both. Thoughts? Analysis? Help?
Oh man, this is not a simple question, and a lot of ink has been spilled on it in recent years; I am not the best person to answer, but I will do my best.
First: Steve Rogers is absolutely a complete sweetheart. Who is telling you he is not a complete sweetheart? Give me their address, I will send Natasha Romanov there to explain to them at length about how they are wrong.
This does not necessarily correlate with political progressivism. (All reports are that Justice Scalia, for example, was a total sweetheart. Politically ahead of his time he was not.)
But the passage of time is not a smooth gradient from one viewpoint to another? For example, if Steve Rogers of late 1930s NYC was politically moderate on economic policy, he would probably think that Bernie Sanders was a little bit too far right for his tastes, and Bernie could stand to be more pro-union, but he’d make do with Bernie if he had to, because the US political discourse as a whole has moved so far right in recent decades that there are no remaining national figures as progressive as the moderates of Steve’s childhood. (And given where and how he grew up, chances are good Steve was well to the left of moderate.)
And in no time period are political and social views monolithic. Is it historically unrealistic that the Howling Commandos were an integrated unit? Yes. Is it unrealistic that there were white men all though the military hierarchy at the time who would have supported an integrated unit if they could? Not at all. And it was less than five years before the desegregationists won and got an integrated military; that didn’t come out of a blank slate. There have always been people of all races who were strongly in favor of racial equality and happy to speak out about it. It does not make Steve Rogers “ahead of his time” to be strongly anti-racist; even if you’re talking about 1872 Steve Rogers it doesn’t make him “ahead of his time”, because there were active anti-racist movements then, too, with white men in them. Similarly on feminism and gay rights and disability activism and so on. He can be extremely progressive on any of those issues without being unrealistic for a man of his time, and given where and how he grew up, all the class + regionalism signposts are there that he very well might have been socially progressive by modern metrics.
Where people do tend to trip into anachronism is that his context for all of those when he wakes up will be very, very different. His feminism will be pre-second-wave feminism. He will think ‘gay’ means ‘glam’ and ‘bisexual’ means ‘genderqueer’ and ‘queer’ is the word used by middle-class lgbt rights activists and never needed reclaiming, and he won’t know the terms ‘genderqueer’ or ‘lgbt’ at all. His anti-racism will be pegged to Marcus Garvey and W.E.B. DuBois and Billie Holiday singing “Strange Fruit”, not to Malcom X and MLK and Janelle Monae singing “Black Lives Matter”. And it’s not just about cultural touchstones and terminology; the way modern people conceptualize the underlying issues, prioritize what is and isn’t important, draw lines around communities and identities, and so on - all of that would be totally different, and a lot of things he’d think of as super-progressive would read to modern social justice advocates as regressively old-fashioned or downright offensive, even if the underlying beliefs and aims were completely shared, even if in some ways Steve was being more radical than modern radicals, because this stuff is complicated.
(The way the current political discourse in the US and Europe almost mirrors the discourse in the 1930s, in the buildup to the triumph of fascism pre-WWII, is super-scary and outside the scope of this post, but let’s just say that he’d find a lot of the current social issues and public opinion on them disappointingly familiar. There’s a recent fanfic where a reporter asks him for the nth time “what do you think would have happened if the fascists had won?” and he snaps and just says, “what do you mean, if they’d won?” That’s not him being ahead of his time, that’s him being very, very, very much of his time.)
There’s another context issue, though, which is that socially, a LOT has changed in the past ninety years, and a lot of it has changed slowly, haltingly, five-steps-forward-three-steps-back, in ways that made sense at the time but don’t really make sense outside the context of the time, and shaped modern ‘old-fashioned’ views in ways that just wouldn’t make sense to a Steve Rogers who didn’t live through the changes the slow way, even if he wasn’t a progressive in the 40s. This is kind of hard to explain, but, for example:
I’ve had a lot of friends who were close to Steve Rogers in age, and a lot of them, even the ones who considered themselves socially progressive, had no problem with gay people as long as they didn’t scare the horses, but got stuck on marriage is one man and one woman. And it wasn’t because they didn’t think gay people should be able to be with the ones they love, it was because they had a very specific idea of what a marriage is, and it involved two people who had very different legal rights, social constraints, training, and opportunity, slotting themselves in a formal relationship structure that was intended to fit within a community of other similar relationships, all reinforcing each other. They wouldn’t put it that way, but if you questioned them, that’s what you eventually found at the bottom of their discomfort with gay marriage. And they’d invested a lot in that concept of marriage, even as all around them, how marriage actually fit into society was changing dramatically. But because it was a slow, patchy change and they lived through every step, they’d never actually had to confront just how much the meaning of marriage, in practical terms, had already changed.
Steve Rogers didn’t get to live it the slow way. Even if you allow that he had a very traditionalist view for the 1930s (and this is not necessarily true; there were queer activists in Brooklyn who wanted marriage then), he didn’t spend eighty years slowly adapting his view to accommodate (or ignore) all the social changes that happened in that time without having to fundamentally change his preconceptions: he just woke up one day to a world with a divorce rate over 50% and an out-of-wedlock birth rate over 40% where sex outside of marriage - even for respectable middle-class women! - is unremarkable and open. A Steve Rogers who’s a cultural traditionalist is not going to be anti-gay marriage; he’s going to be “Well, hell, you’ve destroyed marriage already, so why the hell not.” Even if you like your Cap socially conservative, he’s not going to be a modern, post-Reagan, post-Culture War conservative; he’s going to be a 1930s social conservative dropped into a cultural gap so different I can’t even find my footing to explain how.
A lot has changed since he grew up, and he didn’t live through the process of change the way the people we think of today as having “old-fashioned views” did. And this has changed over time, too - the now-retconned 1950s Captain America Comics, where he took a hard turn to the right just as America as a whole did, do make some sense for someone who lived through the postwar (the way Howard Stark did in movieverse.) The original Stan Lee comics in the 60s show him coming back to a world that’s largely familiar but in the middle of radical, vocal, visible social changes on all sorts of axes, it makes sense that he’d react to it the way he did (to the extent anything in 1960s comics makes sense.) And the Steve Rogers of the current comics has been awake an… indeterminate amount of time in a universe where time doesn’t… happen… the way it does in our universe, but at any rate he’s been living on the slow route long enough that the time he lost probably isn’t the defining factor in his viewpoints anymore. Meanwhile, MCU Cap lost so much time that he effectively was dropped into a completely foreign culture; he won’t be adapting to a world that’s moved on without him a bit, he’s found a world that’s just barely similar enough to confuse him more and is just trying to survive the culture shock; he’s going to have to completely remake all his preconceptions just to survive no matter which way he goes. (I haven’t read any Ults!Cap, which did take the ‘not a sweetheart, not progressive’ route, but my understanding is that Ults!Cap was a total mess, so take that as you will.)
Regardless of how much he’s a man out of time, though, all Steve Rogerses oppose bullies, oppose people who try to rule through fear, hate, greed, and divisiveness, oppose anything that smacks of fascism or authoritarianism, and will fight for what they believe is right though the whole world stand against them.
As long as you stick within those limits, you’re good.
Sorry the title is hella long, but I went through several and kept coming back to this one. Whatev.
Also: Yes, this is a Valdaya story. Yes, I’m including Janel. She seems like a kick ass girl that is cool as hell. If you have a problem with the ship, keep moving and tell someone who cares. Otherwise I hope you enjoy :)
Disclaimer. College kid. No money. All for fun. We’ve been over this.